Joe Root stands by his claim that he cannot recall racism at Yorkshire

Joe Root stands by his claim that he cannot recall witnessing any instances of racism at Yorkshire after Azeem Rafiq described the England captain’s denial as ‘hurtful’ during his explosive DCMS committee hearing

  • Joe Root stands by his statement that he cannot recall any racism at Yorkshire
  • Azeem Rafiq said he found Root’s denial of ever hearing racist language ‘hurtful’
  • Rafiq also said he found the comments of Root, the England captain, ‘strange’
  • Root – who has sent messages to Rafiq – says he never heard anything untoward 











England captain Joe Root has insisted he stands by his statement that he cannot recall witnessing any instances of racism at Yorkshire.

Azeem Rafiq said he found Root’s denial of ever hearing racist language ‘hurtful’ when he gave his harrowing testimony to MPs earlier this month concerning the abuse he suffered over two spells at the county.

Rafiq found Root’s comments, issued before the appearance before the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport committee, ‘strange’ and said it indicated how normalised such language was at Yorkshire.

England captain Joe Root has insisted he stands by his statement that he cannot recall witnessing any instances of racism at Yorkshire.

Azeem Rafiq said he found Root’s denial of ever hearing racist language ‘hurtful’ at a DCMS hearing

Root – who said he had exchanged messages with Rafiq since he gave his evidence – insists he never heard anything untoward.

He said: ‘Hopefully when this tour ends we will work out how this situation can improve. I think it’s important we find ways of bettering the sport and finding ways how we can individually affect thoughts and make a real change in all this.

‘I stand by what I said. If there are oversights on my part then it’s an area where we all have to learn from and I have to learn from about things that have happened since then. 

‘Other things have happened in cricket where I have stepped in and called things out. That comes from growth and learning and understanding education. There’s still further education that I need to undergo and develop myself further. Everyone does.

‘I think there’s so much work there has to be done, so much energy has to be thrown into this. 

‘I look at the group of players around this team and the other two England men’s teams. We spend a lot of time talking about this and what has happened and how we can make a really difference. 

‘There’s a lot of good conversations happening. We can drive this out the game in our position, that will only come in time through acting on things we have discussed as a group and individually.

‘I think there’s a huge amount of sadness from that situation. We have to make sure within the game this can’t happen again. 

‘We have to make sure it’s as inclusive as it possibly can be. We Have to make the game as diverse as possible and champion it as well.’

More to follow. 

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